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Old 12-19-2015, 19:50
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JLV JLV is offline
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Default Re: Mental health crisis in the fire service

Everyone on the job has a threshold of what they can take or what will throw them into tailspin (call-wise). Some guys can take a whole lot more than others before they reach their emotional breaking point.

Originally Posted by SurfnSun View Post
I think it's starting to be talked about a lot more than ever before. Unfortunately a lot of the old timers keep with the ways it's always been done. Aka nobody talks about anything that makes you look like less of a man.
Remember our fallen brothers.
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Old 01-18-2016, 20:07
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Default Re: Mental health crisis in the fire service

Please see this other thread for an excellent first-person viewpoint article written by a SDFD FF/PM who was attacked and stabbed by a crazed bystander during a medical call:

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Old 01-24-2016, 11:03
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Default Re: Mental health crisis in the fire service

From: http://www.fireengineering.com/artic...58&bid=1286151

I'm a Firefighter with PTSD...Now What?

Risk Factors for PTSD

Stress is a fact of life. It's unavoidable. Hardships test us and, much of the time, we come out stronger for it. We get better. We overcome.

But, for some who experience a traumatic event, this may not be the case. According to research by Dr. Matthew Tull in “Rates of PTSD in Firefighters,” you are at greater risk for PTSD if you:

Begin your fire service career at a young age.
Have underlying mental health issues.
Were in close proximity to death.
Hold a supervisory position.
Experience multiple traumatic events in close proximity.
Are unmarried.
Were previously in treatment for another disorder.

You do not need to fulfill any or all of these factors to suffer from PTSD.

Symptoms of PTSD

According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, the four main types of PTSD symptoms are the following:

Reliving the event. Memories of the traumatic event can come back at any time. You may feel the same fear and horror you did when the event took place. For example, you may have nightmares. Or you may feel like you are going through the event again; this is called a flashback. You may see, hear, or smell something that causes you to relive the event, called a trigger. News reports, seeing an accident, or hearing a car backfire are examples of triggers.

Avoiding situations that remind you of the event. You may try to avoid situations or people that trigger memories of the traumatic event. You may even avoid talking or thinking about the event.

Negative changes in beliefs and feelings. The way you think about yourself and others changes because of the trauma. This symptom has many aspects, including the fact that you may not have positive or loving feelings toward other people and may stay away from relationships. You may think the world is completely dangerous, and no one can be trusted.

Feeling keyed up (called “hyperarousal”). You may be jittery or always alert and on the lookout for danger. You might suddenly become angry or irritable. For example, you may have a hard time sleeping or concentrating. You may be startled by a loud noise or surprise.

If you suffer from symptoms like these, performing your job as a firefighter, not mention everyday life, will be difficult.

So now what?

How to Manage PTSD: Prevention

In their article “Understanding Post Traumatic Stress Disorder,” authors Paul J. Antonellis Jr., Floyd “Shad” Meshad, and Dabney Stack argue, “Firefighters suffering from PTSD who receive proper intervention can recover fully and lead productive lives and have successful careers.”

The other side of the coin, sadly, is that, “Many will receive no intervention and will live with the symptoms of PTSD, attempting to cope using destructive behavior. PTSD symptoms may even force some firefighters into retirement.”

Clearly, doing nothing and hoping it goes away isn't the best way to deal with PTSD. So, how do you treat it effectively? The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation's system for preventing and treating PTSD offers an excellent framework for healing, beginning with the After Action Review (AAR).
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Old 01-30-2016, 13:59
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Default Re: Mental health crisis in the fire service

NorCalMike- Any new updates?
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Old 07-30-2016, 14:19
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Default Re: Mental health crisis in the fire service

Bumping this up to the top because PTSD (and cancer) issues keep coming up to the top.
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Old 03-06-2017, 16:07
care1981 care1981 is offline
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Default Re: Mental health crisis in the fire service

I just want to add that our society in general devalues male health, especially in comparison with women. Add in the stigma of mental health.
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